U.S. Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska


Document Type


Date of this Version



The Author(s) 2019.


Journal of Economic Entomology, 112(2), 2019, 712–719 doi: 10.1093/jee/toy410


Thiamethoxam, an insecticide used in soybean seed treatments, effectively suppresses soybean aphids (Aphis glycines) Matsumura (Hemiptera: Aphididae) for a short time after planting. However, exactly when and how quickly soybean aphid populations could increase is unknown. Likewise, we lack data on virulent soybean aphid biotypes (that can overcome soybean resistance) when fed on seed-treated soybean. Determining the survival of soybean aphids over time on insecticidal seed-treated soybean is critical for improving soybean aphid management and may provide insights to manage aphid virulence to aphid resistant-soybean. In greenhouse and field experiments, aphid-susceptible soybean plants (with and without an insecticidal seed treatment) were infested at 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, and 42 days after planting (DAP). We compared aphid survival among biotypes 1 (avirulent) and 4 (virulent) and insecticide treatment 72 h after infestation. We also measured thiamethoxam concentrations in plant tissue using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. As expected, soybean aphid survival was significantly lower on seed-treated soybean up to 35 DAP for both biotypes, which correlates with the decrease of thiamethoxam in the plant over time. Moreover, we found no significant difference between avirulent and virulent biotype survivorship on insecticidal seed-treated soybean plants, although we did find significantly greater survival for the virulent biotype compared with the avirulent biotype on untreated soybean in the field. In conclusion, our study further characterized the relative short duration of seed treatment effectiveness on soybean aphid and showed that survivorship of virulent aphids on seed-treated soybean is similar to avirulent aphids.